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FAQ for Recovery.Gov

ProPublica’s FAQ for Recovery.gov.

ProPublica has been doing some fine work with public information. Their latest is a Frequently Asked Questions file for recovery.gov. As they say:

While it’s fabulous that the stimulus oversight board has made so much data available on Recovery.gov, understanding it all can be a daunting task. In response to some of the questions we’ve had from reporters about the data and Recovery.gov, we’ve started a tip sheet.

Recovery.gov 2.0

The Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board released an upgraded version of the Recovery.gov website on Monday, September 28. Recovery.gov is, per the website, “the U.S. government’s official website providing easy access to data related to Recovery Act spending and allows for the reporting of potential fraud, waste, and abuse.” The site now has a zip code search for finding local Recovery Act awards, a Data Download section, and a new home page layout with more information upfront.

The reviews of the recent upgrade are out and can be summed up as “meh.” The conclusion from interested bloggers seems to be that while a few improvements have been made around the edges, there is little new to shout about. Observers are waiting for the real show, the scheduled October 15 release of the first recipient contract data and October 30 release of the first recipient grant and loan data. From the blogs:

Meet the New Recovery.gov, “(mostly) the same as the old Recovery.gov”, from OMB Watch Blog, September 28.

New Recovery.gov Goes Live, Key Data to be Released Later, from WSJ.com Washington Wire, September 28.

Grading the New Recovery.gov, a substantial review from Sunlight Labs, September 29.

Meanwhile, CRS librarians have updated their compilation of links to Recovery-related information on the web in this report available from OpenCRS.com: Authoritative Resources on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), updated September 10.

New site: Road to Recovery

A new web site: whitehouse.gov/Recovery/. “While WhiteHouse.gov/Recovery will be the place where our story of Recovery is told, you can always go to Recovery.gov to make sure your recovery dollars are going where they should: jobs, jobs, jobs.”

White House Unveils New Stimulus Site, Tech Daily Dose, June 8, 2009. “The White House Web team unveiled yet another Web page on Monday — WhiteHouse.gov/Recovery — that provides snapshots of economic stimulus package dollars at work around the country.”

Recovery.Org vs. Recovery.Gov

Private sector zips past government in Recovery Act tracking, By Robert Brodsky, NextGov, (04/16/2009).

The charter for the Obama administration’s Recovery.gov Web site is to allow every citizen to monitor the progress of economic stimulus spending. It’s an ambitious goal, and one that government might not reach for some time.

But a private sector company boasts it already has created a site that meets the government’s objectives.

On March 31, Seattle-based Onvia launched Recovery.org, a site capable of tracking every dollar of federal, state and local Recovery Act spending in real time, according to company officials….

The Stimulus Deal: The Latest Tally

The reporters at ProPublica have done a great job of comparing the House, Senate, and Conference versions of the Stimulus bill as best they can given that we don’t yet have a copy of the final version of the bill. Check out their chart of changes:

Well, we wanted to tell you what’s in the final, $789 billion stimulus package, but guess what? The bill still hadn’t been released as of late Thursday. So the best we can do is this partial account, which is based on summaries released so far. Where an item is blank, it means we don’t yet have the figure.